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Secret Lives of Color
Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
The unforgettable, unknown history of colors and the vivid stories behind them in a beautiful multi-colored volume The Secret Lives of Color tells the unusual stories of seventy-five fascinating shades, dyes and hues. From blonde to ginger, the brown that changed the way battles were fought to the white that protected against the plague, Picasso's blue period to the charcoal on the cave walls at Lascaux, acid yellow to kelly green, and from scarlet women to imperial purple, these surprising stories run like a bright thread throughout history. In this book, Kassia St. Clair has turned her lifelong obsession with colors and where they come from (whether Van Gogh's chrome yellow sunflowers or punk's fluorescent pink) into a unique study of human civilization. Across fashion and politics, art and war, the secret lives of color tell the vivid story of our culture. "A mind-expanding tour of the world without leaving your paintbox. Every color has a story, and here are some of the most alluring, alarming, and thought-provoking." --Simon Garfield, author of Just My Type
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kuhkuhbird
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Loving this book by Kassia St. Clair. I was originally intrigued by after listening to the podcast by 99% Invisible: https://play.google.com/music/m/Dprkes2cosbnkpqfzvxcggwvpzi?t=340_The_Secret_Liv...

Easily my favorite read so far this year!

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SitsWithaBook
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Such a gorgeous book! About to dive in!

Djspens Love the cover! 3mo
SW-T I‘ve seen this but haven‘t read it. Sounds fun. Hope you enjoy - looking forward to your review on this one! 3mo
SheReadsAndWrites My husband read this and LOVED IT! 3mo
76 likes1 stack add3 comments
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Beccas
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Reading in bed on a Saturday morning .
I am loving this book. I'm learning something amazing on almost every colour I read about.

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moonsinjune
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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This book is dope.

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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Roman Mars recently had author Kassia St Clair on his podcast to talk about colour. It‘s a delightful interview and you can listen here: https://99percentinvisible.org/episode/the-secret-lives-of-color/

WanderingBookaneer I think @BookishMarginalia wanted to read this one. 4mo
AnneCecilie Thanks for the tip. I will definitely check this out 4mo
42 likes2 stack adds4 comments
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A_woman_on_a_bike
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Pickpick

I have to be honest and say I picked up this book because it looked so beautiful. Who says you shouldn‘t judge a book by its cover? 😉 I have then been enthralled by it. In it the author discusses the history, chemistry, societal effect, toxicity, manufacture, and individual examples of the use of over 70 colours divided into groups of whites, yellows, oranges, reds and so on. It sounds dry but she writes with such contagious interest - I loved it

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TiffanyMichele
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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#bellesbookishnewyear19 Day 19: “Book and fairy lights 🧚‍♂️🧚🏼‍♀️”
Well I don‘t have any fairy lights, so twinkle ones it is!
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I recently got this book, “the secret lives of color.” It tells you the origin for all the colors! It is amazing and beautiful. 🥰
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#writersofinstagram #reader #readersofinstagram #readers #twinklelights #thesecretlivesofcolour #authorsofinstagram #writersofinstagram

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Tonton
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Pickpick

Such a brilliantly designed book! Lovely, quiet, intriguing history of selected 75 colors. Perfect for dipping into and savoring a color at a time; but bet you can‘t stop at one unless you have immense willpower. So fascinating. A guilty and rare pleasure is going to this incredible pigment store: https://pigment.tokyo/article/detail?id=1 Now I have something to to enjoy at home!

Ericalambbrown What a fascinating topic for a book! 7mo
48 likes7 stack adds1 comment
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Pretty #endpapers.

gibblr 😍😍😍😍 7mo
gradcat Yaaas! 7mo
booksandsympathy Those are lovely 7mo
54 likes3 comments
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Estate inventories show that in 1700, 33% of nobles‘ & 44% of officers‘ clothing was black; it was popular with domestics too, making up 29% of their wardrobes. At times the streets must have resembled Rembrandt‘s paintings Sampling Officials (1662) [above, from Internet] or Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp (1632): crowds of identikit black-clad folk jostling for space.

LeahBergen Perfect. About 90% of my wardrobe is black. 😆 7mo
Lindy @LeahBergen I learned that before there good black dyes, clothes were mostly greyish brown. The excitement over black still hasn‘t abated. 7mo
41 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Allusions to heliotrope also crop up in the works of JK Rowling, DH Lawrence, PG Wodehouse, James Joyce and Joseph Conrad. The word is pleasurable to say, filling the mouth like a rich, buttery sauce. Added to which, the colour itself is intriguing: antiquated, unusual and just a little bit brassy.

(Internet photo)

rubyslippersreads And there is a Miss Heliotrope in 7mo
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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The deliciously immoral anti-heroine of Oscar Wilde‘s An Ideal Husband, Mrs Cheveley, makes her entrance in heliotrope and diamonds before swashbuckling her way through the remainder of the play and commandeering all the best lines.

(Internet photo)

saresmoore I love it! 7mo
Lindy @saresmoore Now I want to see this play! 7mo
saresmoore Same! I went right away and downloaded the free ebook. 7mo
Lindy @saresmoore I‘ve just borrowed the audiobook via Hoopla. 👯‍♂️ 7mo
37 likes4 comments
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Pickpick

I like what Simon Garfield said about this: “A mind-expanding tour of the world without leaving your paintbox.” It was fun to dip in and out of these short essays in between reading other things. Bonus #1: a fresh supply of amazing trivia to share with my friends. Bonus #2: this very cool cover with cut-out dots that reveal colours underneath. (Do you see how they cleverly match the words in the text?)

35 likes4 stack adds
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Perhaps the final word on the irrational dislike of green should go to Wassily Kandinsky: ‘Absolute green is the most anesthetising colour possible … similar to a fat cow, full of good health, lying down, rooted, capable only of ruminating and contemplating the world through its stupid, inexpressive eyes.‘

[Yikes! And who says a cow‘s eyes are inexpressive??]

Tonton @Lindy I just ordered this!😎 7mo
Lindy @Tonton 👍 7mo
LeahBergen I love green. 😆 7mo
Lindy @LeahBergen 💚👯‍♂️💚 7mo
Texreader I clearly don‘t like this guy! Green‘s my fave color 7mo
33 likes5 comments
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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In 2010, French researchers analyzing the traces of powder found in kohl pots discovered that they also contained man-made chemicals, including two kinds of lead chlorides that would have taken around a month to brew. Mystified, they conducted further tests. These chemicals were found to stimulate the skin around the eye to produce around 240% more nitric oxide than usual, significantly reducing the risk of eye infections.

LeahBergen How cool is that? 7mo
Lindy @LeahBergen Yes, very cool… and in a time before antibiotics. (edited) 7mo
AnneCecilie I love the quotes from the book. I started on this, but stopped reading. These are really sparking my interest again. 7mo
Lindy @AnneCecilie I preferred reading this in small chunks. I‘m glad my quotes have re-sparked your interest. 😇 7mo
37 likes4 comments
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Neil Munro Roger, the dandy couturier who invented Capri pants and was known by his childhood nickname of Bunny, was partial to what he liked to call ‘menopausal mauve.‘ To celebrate his 70th birthday, he wore it from egret-feathered top to glimmering cat-suited toe.

Soubhiville 💕💕💕 7mo
erzascarletbookgasm Oooh, interesting 💗 7mo
Centique That‘s how you rock 70 🙌🙌 7mo
39 likes3 comments
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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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In the ‘80s the Mexican govt allowed a Japanese company—Purpura Imperial—to collect the local caracol sea-snail for kimono dyeing. (Unsurprisingly, a similar Japanese species is vanishingly rare.) While the local Mixtec people, who had been using the caracol for centuries, milked the snails of their purple, leaving them alive, Purpura Imperial‘s method was fatal & the population went into freefall. After years of lobbying the contract was revoked.

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Lindy
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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Interesting that the racist bias in the definition of the colour “nude” has come up in two different books lately, the first being Kory Stamper‘s Word by Word. I prefer the extended treatment in Stamper‘s book over this one. To give St Clair credit, she only allots 2 pages to each of 75 colours, while Stamper devotes a whole chapter to muse about the nuances of nude pantyhose vs nude lipstick.

38 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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UrsulaMonarch
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Mehso-so

Plenty of interesting trivia about color, but each entry was hit or miss to me. My favorite aspect was actually the words used to describe colors and the etymologies of color names. I found the printing of colors on each page a little off, but I did love the cover design!

Laura317 I saw this book just the other day. I thought the same thing browsing through it. 12mo
49 likes1 comment
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Kelican17
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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I like this... 🧡

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saresmoore
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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The accent wall is a really pretty navy from Sherwin Williams called Charcoal Blue. It‘s also the color i chose for my bedroom and I loooove it. (2 of 2)

Cinfhen 😍 14mo
emilyhaldi I love a dark accent wall!! 🙌🏻 14mo
Christine Love everything, especially that navy wall!! 14mo
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GypsyKat Love it! 14mo
tracey38 Looks great. 14mo
Ruthiella Nice! The overall effect is very calming & soothing 🙂 14mo
wanderinglynn Looks fantastic! What a great space. 14mo
Lcsmcat Beautiful ! 14mo
Suet624 Thank you so much for sharing photos! 14mo
vivastory I love navy. Very impressive!! 14mo
LauraBeth Pretty! Love it! 14mo
Bookzombie I love it! 14mo
75 likes12 comments
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violabrain
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Pickpick

Part art history, part chemistry, part world history, this book picks a handful of shades in each color and explores their stories. I loved this book and I learned so much about color, history, and society's relationship to different shades. I read it cover to cover like a novel, but I would actually recommend reading it in small doses. I think I would've enjoyed it more that way. So much fun to look at, too because all of the pages are colored!

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Giabow
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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My thoughts exactly. #beigeisboring

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Giabow
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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The design nerd in me is going nuts. The first few chapters of this book is a lot of what I did my senior thesis on in college (color theory - in my case color theory and how it relates to theatrical design.)
This makes my heart go putter pat.

Dolly Gahh! I wish I‘d known that about you. I have a friend who dyes fiber and has designed an alternative to the color wheel. Maybe I‘ll send you the booklet anyway, interested? (edited) 1y
Giabow @Dolly Oh wow! Yes! That would be awesome! Thank you!! 1y
13 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Chelsibeau
Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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No work today!! Happy wind day to DC. 😊

emilyhaldi How‘s the book? I‘m so intrigued, it‘s been on my list for a while! (edited) 1y
ephemeralwaltz Beautiful photo! 1y
Chelsibeau @emilyhaldi I find it fascinating. Each color or tint is only 2-4 pages so it isn‘t long winded. More short historical blurbs. 1y
Chelsibeau @ephemeralwaltz thank you 😊 1y
52 likes1 stack add4 comments
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IndianaRed
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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We decided to have our monthly book club meeting at Barnes & Noble. Here we will determine what we want to read for the rest of the year.

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saresmoore
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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My goodness, Scott! I am utterly overwhelmed by your thoughtfulness! As you can tell from the chalk/taupe wall in the photo, my new house could use some more lively color. 😏 I‘m excited for a Cork Dork buddy read and I adore the mug and socks! My Floridian transplant self is grateful for such gorgeous cold weather staples. Thank you, thank you!

Mitch Very cute socks! 1y
AlaMich Somebody gave me matryoshka dolls like that when I was little. Very cute! 1y
emilyhaldi Oooohh I am pining over that Color book! ❤️ 1y
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britt_brooke So nice!! 1y
AmyG Nice! 1y
LeahBergen I love the socks! ❤️❤️❤️ 1y
readordierachel How thoughtful! 1y
Graciouswarriorprincess Love those socks! 1y
batsy How lovely! That mug 😍 1y
vivastory I'm glad it arrived safely. I'm looking forward to Cork Dork. It'll be a good excuse to drink more wine! 😂🍷📚🍷📚 1y
saresmoore @vivastory Yes and amen! 1y
Suet624 That‘s so sweet. I have that color book too!! 1y
saresmoore @Suet624 The book is so neat! I feel very honored. 1y
Suet624 I love knowing just how many love and admire you. 1y
Cinfhen Hi!!!just checking in!!! How's everything going??? How'd the move go? How are the girls adjusting???? Miss seeing u on Litsy 😘😘😘😘 1y
88 likes15 comments
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ErickaS_Flyleafunfurled
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Christmas present from a friend! This book is SO beautiful! All I want to do is curl up and read it with dazzled eyes for the rest of the day. 🌈

LitLogophile Ooooo I have a hold on this audiobook but I think I might need to purchase a physical copy 😀 2y
emilyhaldi Love this 😍 2y
ErickaS_Flyleafunfurled @LitLogophile Yes! I haven‘t even started reading it yet because I can‘t stop thumbing through the pretty pages 2y
AceOnRoam Probably not a great choice for an ebook ! Looks gorgeous 💛💜💚 2y
58 likes1 stack add4 comments
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vivastory
Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Mini histories of 75 colors! Stunning edition! #AllTheExclamations

Riveted_Reader_Melissa That sounds wonderful! 2y
vivastory @Riveted_Reader_Melissa It really does. It's cheap too! List price is only $20 for hardcover! 2y
celtichik I'm hoping to find this one under the tree! 2y
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vivastory @celtichik Fingers crossed! 2y
saresmoore @vivastory Stop posting books I must, MUST acquire! I‘m obviously kidding. Don‘t stop! 2y
vivastory @saresmoore That's all my posts... until I get my strand quarterly box this weekend 2y
saresmoore Ooh, now that sounds exciting! 2y
vivastory @saresmoore It'll be my first one. I am hopeful. They had several options to choose from. 2y
saresmoore Very cool. I look forward to your unboxing! 2y
AlaMich That looks awesome! Also sort of reminds me of 2y
Suet624 I received an ARC of this book. It‘s beautiful! 2y
67 likes6 stack adds12 comments
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Emilyrjones22
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Oh my I need this book!!!! ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

10 likes1 stack add
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sherrynuts
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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White is a bit of a snob. 😂

Tadams4 This sounds like an amazing book! 2y
sherrynuts @Tadams4 so far it is! Lots of interesting historical info on color and art. I'm so glad my library ordered it for me. 2y
11 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ThatBookishGal
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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WOW!!! Was not expecting this when I came home from work! I won the “Perfect-Night-In” kit from Penguin Books! I‘m so excited to dig into this! I love pub gifts!!!

SassyBookworm How awesome!!! Congrats!!!🎉 2y
LeahBergen Wow! 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 2y
25 likes2 comments
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ElenaBaer
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Pickpick

I am enjoying this book. You can read short bits while waiting for dinner to finish. It‘s organized by color (duh) and it delves into a brief history related to the colors. Like Acid Yellow and the beginnings of the smily face emoji. 🙂

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DogEaredBooks
Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Another shot of Bookbug from when I went back again today 😬 I love this checkout desk. They made it themselves with donated books.

JackOBotts This. Is. Beautiful! Such a great idea. 📚📚📚 2y
TricksyTails 😍📚 2y
Eyelit Very cool!! 2y
Suet624 ❤️❤️❤️ 2y
83 likes4 comments
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DogEaredBooks
Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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I'm visiting my sister in Kalamazoo, Michigan and first stop is my one of my favorite places ever: Bookbug. It just expanded and it's honestly the my personal perfect bookshop. If you are ever near Kalamazoo you should definitely stop in!

TricksyTails Looks so cozy! 😍📚 2y
mrozzz So cool!! 2y
FlowerFairy 😍 2y
70 likes4 comments
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kammartinez
The Secret Lives of Color | Kassia St Clair
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Pickpick

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ of 5 ⭐️s

If you‘ve ever marvelled at the works of Van Gogh and Monet, or just wondered why Apple products are white (spoiler: they‘re technically not white), then this book is for you. It takes a look at a whole host of colours and the stories behind them: from the mysteries of their making to their cultural significances. Fun and easy reading for artists and readers alike (especially the colour glossary at the end XD).

9 likes1 stack add
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Natasha.C.Barnes
The Secret Lives of Colour | Kassia St Clair
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My friend just wrote up a buzzfeed piece on this book--it looks like such a cute book!

MinDea So cute! 2y
TheWordJar That sounds lovely! Have you seen this book? Another delightful collection of colorfulness... 2y
emilyhaldi Into it!! 2y
70 likes6 stack adds3 comments